When Adam and Eve sinned, their first instinct was to make clothes (Genesis 3:7). They sewed a loincloth out of fig leaves; then they tried to hide themselves to escape God’s penetrating eye. God of course finds them and sees through their disguise.
It's hard to say exactly what Adam and Eve were thinking in clothing themselves after the Fall. In some way or another, their sin made them self-conscious. They felt "exposed" by their sin and so they sought artificial protection...something to cover their shame. Like a cat in a litter box, they thought they could hide their mess...out of sight it’s out of mind.
I find it interesting that God didn't tell Adam and Eve to stop hiding and shed their fig loincloths. Instead, he encourages them in their effort to cover their nakedness. Only he replaces their fig leaf attire with clothes that He fashioned Himself from animal skins.
Our sins do need to be covered. And so we manufacture many such "loincloths" that we use to cover our shame and shield us from the nakedness of our sin. And many of these coverings are good. For instance, we teach our children manners. We tell them to say "please" whether they feel like it or not. When someone gives us a gift, we say "Thank you" whether we truly appreciate it or not. If we didn't cover up our sinful nature with unconditional politeness, and if we simply spoke what we thought or felt all the time, the world would be a terrible place. So for the sake of our neighbor we cover our sin with manners, and this is acceptable in God's sight.
There is a problem however, if we use our coverings as a way for us to ignore our sinfulness, or to forget our need for forgiveness. And that seems to be the whole reason behind God's having them change clothes, fashioning for them new clothes made from the skins of animals.
In having Adam and Eve change clothes, God wasn't just making a fashion statement. God helped them cover up...only fig leaves wouldn't do. Instead God used the skins of dead animals to clothe or "hide" their nakedness. (Maybe that's why we call animal skins "hides"?) This is because, even though they shouldn't wear their sin on their sleeve, they needed to be reminded that the wages of sin is death. It’s as if God is saying, “Yes, because of what you have done, you can no longer live an exposed life. Your sinfulness is ugly and you need to cover it up for the sake of your neighbor. But don’t think that once you’ve covered it up, the problem is solved. I will cover you with the skins of dead animals so you can hide your sin, but still remember that your sin can be covered only through the death of another."
Christ came to die on the cross and in his sacred death, he covered your sin with his righteousness. He did this not so that you forget your sin, but so that you remember that your sinful nature that still wages war within you is covered by his death (Romans 6:3-5). We would rather forget our sins altogether by sweeping them under the rug, or covering them with foliage. We would rather cover our sins with excuses and alibis. But God says, "Stop trying to justify yourself. Own up to your sins, and repent. But don't despair, for you have been covered by the robe of righteousness given you in your baptism. For as many of you as have been baptized into [the death of] Christ have 'put on' Christ" (Galatians 3:27). "For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God" (Colossians 3:3).
Pastor Nathan Fuehrer
Sunday School is taking a summer break. Sunday School will resume on September 8th. Have a wonderful summer holiday.
If you would like a fulfilling leadership position in the church please consider being the Assistant Sunday School Coordinator next year.
If you would like to participate as a Sunday School Teacher or as a Sunday School Teacher’s Assistant in the Sunday School program next year please call: Kathy Withage at 345-5454.
It is wonderfully rewarding to be part of the children’s growth in God’s Kingdom!!
Matthew Chpt. 11: vs. 25 (Jesus Gives True Rest) At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and have revealed them to babes. vs. 28 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
Submitted by: Kathy Withage, Sunday School Coordinator
LITTLE LAMBS CHRISTIAN PRESCHOOL
Little Lambs Christian Preschool is getting to wrap up another great school year. In the past month, the children have gone on 2 fantastic field trips, to the Helen Schuler Nature Centre, and also to Aggie Days. Our Year End Celebration will be held on Friday June 14th.
We would like to thank our dedicated teaching staff for all their hard work and commitment this year. Thank you to Shannon Steeves, Jade Ronne, Andrea Hanna, Tia Raats, and Annemarie Joseph, for making this a memorable year for our students!
While we prepare to wrap up this school year, we are also looking forward to next year. Though some classes are full for next year, there are still a few spaces available. If you, or someone you know, is interested in registering a 3 or 4 year old in our program, please call our administrator Tanya, at 403-892-6627.
9th ANNUAL GOLF TOURNAMENT
Our 9th Annual Golf Tournament will take place on August 10th at Magrath Golf Course at 2:00 p.m. It is ‘best ball’ game and even if you are not a good golfer, it’s a lot of fun to be had. If you would like to car pool or follow someone out there, please let Candice Miller know so we can set up a time to meet at the Costco parking lot.) A sign-up sheet is posted in the narthex. We are accepting any prizes, certificates or cash for prizes.If you are not a golfer and just want to come out for supper, it will be at 5:30 p.m. in the Club House.
A ball hitting a tree shall be deemed not to have hit the tree. Hitting a tree is simply bad luck and has no place in a scientific game. The player should estimate the distance the ball would have travelled if it had not hit the tree and play the ball from that point. Preferably atop a firm tuft of grass.
The ‘Empty Spools’ will be hosting Coffee Fellowship on Sunday, June 23rd. Quilts and other hand-made items will be on display. Wednesday, June 26th will be our last session before summer holidays. We will start up again on the first Wednesday in September. Thanks again to everyone who has contributed funds, equipment and materials to our group. The need in our community for our quilts, afghans and other items is great. We appreciate your continued support.
Beginning on June 16, we will move to our summer schedule with one service being held at 10 a.m. Holy Communion will be celebrated on the first and third Sunday as usual.
For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore, I command you "You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy, and to the poor, in your land". Deuteronomy 15:11
Let me introduce you to the family we will be helping this fall: Maritza Valenzuela is a 32 year-old mother of 2 boys, Victor (age 3) and Hector (age 2). I was able to meet her for the first time on May 27th. She lives in a barrio (neighborhood) of Puerto Penasco that is very sparse and desolate. There is no electricity or water and the roads are a fine sand. The missionary that is guiding us through our project, Mission Jim, found Maritza in desperate conditions and is trying to get her into accommodations that are suitable for her family. There is promise of utilities within the next 3 months, but in the meantime, she manages without. I looked around her 11 x 22 space for some sort of cooking options and asked her how she prepares food for the kids. Her answer was that she had no food. She opened a cooler to show me a couple of cans and crackers and jam stored in it. Currently she goes to a neighbor and together they make a meal when possible. We had stopped for a few groceries on route and the boys were delighted to have some fresh fruit, juice and a chocolate donut ( I left there with a bit of chocolate on my cheek from a goodbye kiss from Hector).
Earlier this Spring, a group of youth called UTH missions started on a home for this family. We will continue on the project in November, adding to the simple structure and equipping Maritza with basics so that the family can live year-round on their property. Jim has been renting a port-a-potty for them at a cost of $80.00 per month. He has started on septic for a bathroom addition which may be completed through the summer. Because of the fine dust, the boys are prone to bronchitis regularly so I have asked Jim to see if he can arrange for a load of a product called caliche, which is a coarser sand/gravel that packs when rained on or driven on.
As you can probably imagine, I could continue in length and great detail describing the poor conditions that some people in Mexico, like this young mom, have to endure.
I am very excited that we will be able to make a difference for this family and others in Puerto Penasco. The mission project has been very blessed to have the support of Immanuel members. I am delighted that there are people interested in traveling to Mexico to build for this family. Jim has also suggested we might like to offer a mini VBS for the neighborhood kids who will be attracted to the activities during the few days that we are building.
Funds for the project have been accumulating these past few Sundays and I thank you for your generosity. The fun-filled pie auction day was very successful with proceeds of $2825.00. That gets added to the budgeted seed money of 2,000.00 and the garage sale proceeds of 736.12 (plus 1/2 of the 500.00 FaithLife grant). In addition, individuals have generously donated to bring our total to over $8,000.00. With this amount we will be able to complete the building and include basics such as wiring, insulation, cupboards, bathroom fixtures, etc. We will strive to bring power and water to the neighborhood and supply much-needed bathrooms for other existing homes.
Since this is the last newsletter for the summer, I encourage you to email me if you have questions about the project. I invite you to attend an information session at the church on Monday, June 10th at 7 p.m. At that time, we can discuss details of the project plus costs associated with travel and lodging. Immanuel will be responsible for the costs of the actual project but individual travelers must cover their own expenses. Anyone interested is most welcome to attend. Please continue to pray for this mission - for Maritza and her family, for the poor of Penasco, and for the members of Immanuel who will participate.
Hasta pronto! See you soon.
In His Service,
Looking for More Praying Mothers - We would like a few more women/mothers for our Tuesday afternoon group which meet from 1:30 - 3:00 p.m. Please join our little support group. If this time is not convenient for you but you would like to participate in this type of group please speak to Katherine Canfield 403-756-2149/403-327-4336. Prayer provides comfort and security, and also fulfills the mission the Lord has for us to pray for each other and bear one another’s burdens. I cannot think of any better way to truly love your children/grandchildren, families & friends than by lifting them up in prayer on a consistent basis. Mothers/Grandmother/ Aunts of all ages welcomed.
Thank You Thank You. The Food Train couldn’t exist without our amazing volunteers and coordinator. A great big Thank You goes out to all those who have willingly cooked meals and delivered them these past many months. I would also like to send a big Thank You of appreciation to our retiring Food Train Coordinator, Cheryl Boehr as she will be moving at the end of May. Please welcome our New Food Train CoordinatorTish Lees. Thank you, Tish for taking on this responsibility and ministry in our Congregation. Please support Tish with your prayers in her new role.
Your help is needed. Our Moms & Tots group is growing and I am excited by that. Please keep us in your prayers that this may be a fulfilling ministry to Moms and connect young families within our church as well as an outreach ministry to those outside our church community. With the growing numbers it would be very nice to have a few more volunteers for our childcare. Please prayerfully consider if you could volunteer about two hours on a Thursday morning once or twice a month. Two hours once a month can help our moms & tots group greatly!
Moms & Tots Group will run the second & fourth Thursday morning of each month June 13 & June 27, 2013, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. A Moms & Tots group is a group of mothers of preschoolers [a mother of a child from conception through kindergarten]. This group is an opportunity to build community by providing an open, caring and accepting atmosphere where women can come together to share this important season of life. A place for mentoring where mature women listen, encourage and offer information and perspectives gained through experience. A place for practical instruction, teaching focuses on areas of common interest, offering inspiration and information that is relevant to the life of a mother. Interested? Bring a Friend. If you need more information please call Katherine Canfield Parish Coordinator 403-327-4336 or 403-756-2149.
Register Now! For the next Pastoral Care Visitor Training scheduled for June 21 & 22 to held here at Immanuel Lutheran Church. Do you enjoy exploring with others what their faith means to them? Do you like listening to their “stories,” the journey of their lives? Can you walk with them as they figure out their spiritual place within the universe and within who they are? Would you like to become more aware of what you can do, what “tools” you can use? You may want to just visit with others within your congregation and/or to also touch the people in a care residence. The Good Samaritan Society is offering training in the how-to of visiting with older people. Training will be Friday June 21, 6-9 p.m. and Saturday, June 22, 8 am - 4 pm at Immanuel Lutheran church. Cost is $70 which includes workshop material and Lunch on Saturday. Check out the Bulletin Board by the Fellowship Hall, take a pamphlet and mail in your registration in as soon as possible.
Registration for VBS is now open. Limited space is available so please register your child early to ensure a spot for your child. The Preschool 3&4 years is already ½ full. See bulletin board by fellowship hall for details and registration forms. Completed forms can be drop off at the church office.
Mark Your Calendar, Sunday June 23, 2013 VBS Orientation Pizza Meeting After the 11:00 a.m. service. Please plan to join us and confirm your attendance with Debbie 403-328-8342
TELL IT ON THE MOUNTAIN. WHERE JESUS CHRIST IS LORD
Volunteers still desired. Become a volunteer for VBS this year and connect children with the most important message of their entire life time, the miraculous story of what Jesus did for us. Every child needs to hear the good news they have a Savior at their side, strengthening them no matter what mountains they face. This year you can equip those children to share that message with their friends and family. They will be ready to talk and tell it on the mountain! Be a part of sharing Christ one child at a time. VBS has a place for everyone! Everyone’s talent is needed and put to good use. No experience is necessary, training manuals and help are provided. Vacation Bible School will run July 15-19 (Mon-Fri) from 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. We still need approximately the following numbers of volunteers: 6 Preschool Helpers, 2 kindergarten/Grade 1 Helpers, 2 Kitchen Helpers, 1 Craft Helpers, 2-3 games/recreation volunteers, 3-4 snack volunteers, 3-4 volunteers for registration tables, and at least 1 Sound system /power point volunteer, 1 Games Helper. If you could help out in any of these positions please call Debbie for information 403-328-8342 or fill out the form for helpers available on the table in the Narthex and drop off in Debbie Lemke’s mailbox.
Immanuel Lutheran Church
April 30, 2013
A-BC District Mission Donations for Month........................................................................................................... $nil
A-BC District Mission Donations to Date ......................................................................................................... 618.50
CLWR Mission Donations for Month ............................................................................................................... 280.00
CLWR Mission Donations to Date ................................................................................................................... 805.00
Servus Credit Union Cheq. Acc.t Balance................................................................................................. $26,923.58